A Marcelo Gallardo he was noted as agreeing at the press conference after River’s thrashing against Alianza Lima of Peru 8-1. And it was not for less: the Doll highlighted the functioning of his team throughout the semester, despite some potholes that he recorded in his performance, and highlighted the performance of Julian Alvarezauthor of six goals in the night of Liberators cup.
I also read: Julián Álvarez, historical: he is the first player to score six goals in the same River match
Asked about the future of Álvarez, whose pass was already bought by Manchester City and who only has two games left in the Millionaire shirt, the coach said: “There is a team that made a great investment, You get a diamond in the rough. We are countries that export soccer players, many soccer players have left us in this time and we have tried to survive all those games. Replacing Julián is not going to be easy, we are not going to find a Julián to take his place”.
“We have to be aware that it is very possible that he will play the round of 16 of the Cup and that he will go to his new destination, it is so. What happens does not depend on me or what we can do, “she added.
And, finally, with a smile on his face, he made a request to City and his coach, Josep Guardiola: “If they want to loan us the player until the end of the year, we have no problem and we will be very grateful. We tell them that we are going to prepare a footballer who is already clearly mature to make the jump, but we could give him even more flight. But he won’t listen to my request. We would be very grateful if you can leave us Julián until the end of the year”.
“We knew it was going to be a tight year in terms of a lot of competition and many games in a short time to play, it wasn’t going to be easy. This first part of the semester was like this and when we return next week to train it will be like this. Whether it suits us or not is beside the point. We had already prepared for this, knowing that we were going to cut almost nothing and continuing with the dynamics of the matches”.
“In these last games the team showed its best version in terms of play and dynamics, in terms of results. It is good that we have been given the opportunity to qualify comfortably in the group stage of the Libertadores, with a good number of points, hoping that next semester will be with this good feeling with which we leave today”.
The adaptation of the reinforcements
“The players who have been arriving in these years have always had a normal adaptation period. Many have arrived at the beginning of the year and have had minutes. Time will give them greater confidence in their stability and to skip the first stage, which is always difficult. Footballers who are very important today have also suffered that first stage. Over time they will consolidate themselves as the very good footballers they are, adapting to River’s life and River’s demands, which is not easy”.
The irregularity of the team
“In this first stage of the year we have been irregular, most of the teams have had good moments and others not so good, but we do not lose our memory, that is to value. We can play good or bad games, some in a confusing way, but we quickly recover the memory of what we are and the team shows good things again. That gives me peace of mind. What one wants as a coach is for the team to have as few potholes as possible, for the margins of error to be reduced to be reliable in all competitions”.
“I am confident that we will continue trying to maintain the base of the team. Beyond Julián’s departure we would have to sustain ourselves as a team. We are quite strong in that sense. Of the two objectives that we had in this first part of the year, one cost us, which was not being able to reach the final of the Argentine tournament, and the other we more than fulfilled. We have high expectations for what’s to come.”
The European football transfer market and the problems it brings to River
“We are certain that every year we suffer the same consequences with regard to the transfer markets that open in Europe. We enter the stage of defining competitions in the Copa Libertadores and unfortunately we always play at a disadvantage there. When you have to face a final stage, it is difficult to reinforce yourself, support the teams and bring in footballers. It has been like this for all these years. That is why it is very valuable to be able to sustain itself over time, face competitions and have the same intentions as eight years ago of being able to offer ourselves despite the problems we have and be in the continuous fight of everything we play, with all the difficulty that this have. There are times when teams have good passages, one season, one and a half or two and then have problems or potholes. Winning and losing, we have sustained ourselves in all these years with a very high level of competitiveness. That has marked us. What is going to happen to us is not new, it happened to us a long time ago and we have faced it. It is the ideal? No, but we are an exporting country of soccer players, if we could support them we would be talking about something else, but we cannot support them for obvious reasons”.
River’s style is not negotiated
“Having a style is the hardest thing to achieve. You can win, you can lose, but being convinced of how you want to do it is something else. Here the results are analyzed a lot, tomorrow they will talk about River being a steamroller. We usually play like this. When we play this way things work out for us, the rivals feel it. We are talking about recognizing ourselves in that idea. There are times when we cannot develop it because the rivals play, but you can’t go into despair when you lose and say ‘Now I have to change everything’. That analysis is very mediocre. Yes, we can modify things, because this is about seeing things that we can correct, there are strategies that exist, but the main idea and the style of a team when there is conviction should not be modified. It doesn’t matter if you lose.”
“When we lost to Boca, everyone talked and I told them to be calm. If I tell the players to change everything, I have to go, because they don’t recognize me. I respect the opinion of outsiders, the resultist analysis, but those things don’t confuse me. You can be one of the best teams if you sustain yourself over time with an idea”.